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Wednesday, March 16, 2011
The Path of Salvation- Buddha's 8 fold path- by Shrii Shrii A'nandamu'rti- Subháśita Saḿgraha Part 19
Buddha's 8 fold path to Salvation
The Path of Salvation- Buddha's 8 fold path- by Shrii Shrii A'nandamu'rti- Subháśita Saḿgraha Part 19
The subject of today’s discourse is “The Path of Salvation.” As you all know, everything moves. Humans will have to move. Nobody can remain stationary and life represents that movement. There must be movement in human life.
As in all strata of life, in our physical stratum we’ll have to face, we’ll have to solve so many problems, and in the physical stratum also the goal is the Cosmic welfare, the Supreme welfare. As this physical stratum, however, is a creation of fundamental relative factors which are also moving, there cannot be any permanent goal or permanent point of stagnation in this realm. Really speaking, there cannot be any progress in the realm of physicality nor in the psychic arena. You are moving, solving one problem, a few more problems will be created and so on. But human beings cannot remain idle. They will have to move forward.
In psychic stratum also, so many psychic knots are unknotted but so many psychic problems are again created. If there is no proper adjustment amongst physical, psychic and spiritual movements, the psychic side of humans will get unbalanced and many new psychic diseases will get created. This is the present position of the world. There has been enough physical progress, less spiritual progress and the psychic structures of humans have lost their equilibrium, rather their equipoise, and that’s why the modern society is suffering from so many psychic ailments. Really speaking there cannot be any true progress in the psychic arena. Progress can be only in the spiritual level, because the spiritual goal, the spiritual desideratum of the humans is beyond the periphery of the fundamental factors – spatial, temporal and personal. So a person, a wise person is to move on towards the spiritual goal. While moving along the path of beatitude they will do their physical and psychic duty properly. This is the true path.
Now everything moves and that movement is of systaltic nature. Wherever there is any movement there is pulsation. Without pulsation there cannot be any movement. And this pulsation, that is movement through speed and pause, is an essential factor for each and every animate or inanimate object. Wherever there is existential factor there must be this pulsation. An entity acquires strength and stamina, during the pause phase, and emanates vibration during the speed period. There cannot however, be any absolute speed or absolute pause in the created world.
For a proper or a well-knit structure, there must be one nucleus and there must be many entities moving around that nucleus. Whether within a very little atom or in this vast cosmological order, the same movement is there around a nucleus. Hence in the middle there is the nucleus and everybody is moving around it and always the path is to some extent elliptical. I said “to some extent” as it is not actually elliptical. In the case of atoms, electrons are moving. In case of our ethereal order, the moon moves around the earth. In case of our solar system so many planets are moving around the sun, and in the Supreme Cosmological Order the point of command is Parama Puruśa. He is the nucleus and everybody is moving around Him.
Now the fundamental difference between this cosmological order having Parama Puruśa as the nucleus and other orders, is that in all other orders the movement is physical and the nucleus is also physical. In the case of this Cosmological Order, however, the nucleus is spiritual with all the potentialities of psychic and physical expression, and the moving entities are physical having psychic and physical pabula. That is, when we move, we not only move physically but we move along with our psychic structure and spiritual structure also.
When asked by his disciples, Lord Buddha said that the proper style of movement should be according to a definite system and in that definite system there should be eight fundamental factors. Another thing I should say here, for movement around the nucleus two forces are at work – one is centripetal and one is centrifugal. The centripetal forces called VidyáShakti or centre-seeking force. Those moving with Vidyá Shakti get inspiration to move towards the nucleus. The other is centrifugal or drifting away from the centre. This movement always increases the radius, and where Vidyá is more strong the radius is always reduced until finally the moving entity becomes one with the nucleus. This is salvation – becoming one with Parama Puruśa, becoming one with the Supreme Faculty. Now, how to decrease the radius? That is, how to strengthen the Vidyá Shakti? That is a spiritual secret. Lord Buddha says, there are eight factors. Those factors will help the spiritual aspirant in lessening the length of the radius. The first is Samyak Darshan or proper philosophy. One must know what one is and what is one’s goal. A goal-less march is meaningless, mere wastage of time and energy. So the aspirant must know who he or she is and what is the goal, what is his or her destination. When moving along the road, if you don’t know what is your destination, your energy is wasted. So you should know what is your goal and this is called Samyak Darshan in Saḿskrta.
The second important factor is Samyak Saḿkalpa. A person must have firm determination that, “I am to reach the goal, I must reach there.” This second item is known as Samyak Saḿkalpa – proper determination.
The third one is Samyak Vák. All your expressions, sensory or motor movements must be of a definite order; they must be properly oriented. That is, your nerve-fibres, your nerve-cells must always be properly utilized.
Then the fourth one is Samyak Ájiiva, proper physical and psychic occupation. One may earn money by stealing but it is not called a proper occupation. One may earn money by gambling but it is also not a proper occupation. One’s occupation should be pure. It must not go against the interest of the collective body. Human beings are social creatures. In the universe, in the world of living beings, there are two kinds of creatures: one is social, the other is non-social. Human beings are social, lions are social, and there are many other animals who live, together. There are certain creatures who are non-social. Tigers are non-social, goats are non-social. Human beings are social creatures. You see, I never say that human beings are social animals. Old logicians used to say that human are rational animals. I never say they are rational animals. I say that human life is an ideological flow. Why should I say humans are rational animals? Then should I say that animals are moving plants? I should not say this. So humans are social creatures and nobody should be allowed to go against the collective interest of the society. It is the fundamental factor for neat and clean behaviour. So the fourth factor is Samyak Ajiiva. That is, you must have proper occupation – your occupation must not go against the collective interest of the society, not only in the realm of physicality, but also in the psychic pabulum. That is, your thought waves should be properly directed, otherwise today’s deteriorating thought may be translated into tomorrow’s deteriorating action. One first thinks, then does accordingly. So thoughts should be pure and properly directed.
The fifth item is Samyak Vyáyám. It means proper exercise. You do so many physical exercises, engage in so many sports and past times for the development of physical health and it is a necessity, rather a dire necessity for a living society. But most people neglect the exercise of their mind and spirit. Human existence has got three parts, three important and inseparable portions: physical body, psychic body and spiritual body. So there must be proper exercise of not only the physical body but also the psychic and spiritual bodies. Samyak Vyáyám denotes proper physico-psycho-spiritual exercise.
Then the sixth one is Samyak Karmánta. Whenever you start a work you should complete the work with proper zeal and proper sincerity; the finish should be of perfect order. Starting a particular work but leaving it unfinished is not good. When you have started any work, you must finish it properly. Let there be so many troubles, so many dangers, so many adversities, but when yo have started it complete it neatly.
Then the seventh is Samyak Smrti. It means proper memory. What is memory? “Anubhuta visaya sampramosah smrtih”. When you felt one thing in your mind, perceived something – or conceived something, and when afterwards with your mental force you recreate that thing in your mind, that process of recreation is called memory. For this memory, for the cerebral memory we require nerve fibres and nerve-cells is the medium. Memory of this life May be carried over to the next life but the nervecells of this life won’t be carried over to the next life, because nerve-cells will become one with the earth. Then how is memory of one life carried over to another life? It is due to extra-cerebral process. In this process one of the factors of this quinquelemental world serves as the medium. Here Samyak Smrti means proper Smrti, that is, proper memory. You should remember the proper thing which deserves remembering. And what is that? You know you are to do japa of your mantra always. While doing meditation you do it while doing. Worldly duties: while attending to mundane duties, you should also remember your mantra mentally. Generally you forget it. You are so much disturbed and so much engaged in the work that work takes the prominent role and your own incantation becomes less important, when by dint of constant practice you don’t forget this mantra, you don’t forget this incantation, it is Samyak Smrti. This is proper memory.
The last one is Samyak Samádhi, that is, proper suspension of mind. What does that mean? When one sincerely meditates on a particular object, one’s mind gets attached and that attached mind gets suspended in that object. Now when Parama Puruśa is the object of meditation, what happens? When the mind gets attached you become one with Parama Puruśa. That suspension of mind in Parama Puruśa is called salvation, this is the eight, fold path. Now each and every living being is moving not only with the physical body but also with the psychic and spiritual body, they are moving around the Supreme hub. Now, if they remember that their goal is the Supreme Nucleus – Parama Puruśa, what will happen? The length of the radius will go on decreasing and decreasing, and when it becomes zero, the moving entity will become one with the nucleus. It is the path of salvation. When one’s mind is not properly objectivated, i.e., when one gets attached to only matter, one may be reduced to the status of quinquelemental objects like earth, stone, sound, etc. When mind is properly objectivated the human entity becomes one with the goal, one with the Supreme Entity and he or she will attain salvation, and when it is not properly objectivated what happens? The radius goes on increasing and increasing, but it can never go beyond the periphery of the Supreme entity. It is drifted away from the nucleus but it remains within His cosmological structure. Now, it is not the path of salvation. But how then can one be with the Supreme? The final word is, by the grace of the Supreme. You may say if I do not get His grace how can I go towards Him? The reply is simple. His grace is for all – both for virtuous and non-virtuous. All are His children. Nobody is unimportant, nobody is insignificant. The thing is that somebody realizes that grace and somebody does not. Why does somebody realize the grace and somebody not? The reason is that while moving along this path around the Supreme Nucleus in the cosmological arena, if one holds the umbrella of ego over one’s head, what happens? Suppose it rains and you are holding an umbrella over your head, what happens? Will you be drenched by the rain? No. If you want to be drenched you will have to remove the umbrella. Similarly if you are moving around the Supreme Father and holding up the umbrella of ego, you won’t be drenched by His grace, and if you remove that umbrella of ego, you will be drenched by His grace and you will feel that His grace is for you. So the spiritual aspirant must move along these eight-fold factors and also should remember to remove the umbrella of ego from his or her head and be drenched by His grace. You spiritual aspirants, you should remember that Parama Puruśa is always with you and His grace is always with you, and you all are His loving children. You need not develop any fear complex regarding the Supreme Father. You should remember that He’s the Supreme Father. He’s always calling you and you should always be ready to give a proper response.
Shrii Shrii A'nandamu'rti
Subháśita Saḿgraha Part 19
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